Long walks, romantic scenery, untamed beauty, lush palm-fringed shores, gorgeous rock formations…a hidden gem on the southeast coast of Puerto Rico.
On the southeast coast of Puerto Rico (see map below), the beaches of Maunabo possess unique traits making it one of the most scenic remaining on the island.
Stepping foot on this Punta Tuna beach gives you a sense of total embrace by nature alone with no buildings on site except the Punta Tuna Lighthouse glistening with the sun painted in sunny yellow. The Punta Tuna Reserve is a nesting site for turtles.
The colors…deep greens of the mountains, lighter green of palm trees, deep and cool blue tones of the water, the color of the sand getting deeper as the water gently touches…
If you’re staying in San Juan or the east coast, the drive here is easy and very enjoyable with scenic views the whole way to Maunabo.
Puerto Rico offers about 300 beaches each with its own unique traits, this beach on the Punta Tuna Reserve is surely a gem worth the visit for nature lovers seeking a feeling of escape.
As you walk along the shore you won’t be seeing any concrete buildings, just a thick lush line of tall palm trees dancing to the wind.
The sand is really unique at this beach, it goes from white to really deep golden orange with strings of black sand coming through in some spots. Unlike beach resort areas, the sand is not combed but naturally landscaped with flowering climbing plants, drift food that shaped by the sea into art, and dry seaweed where cute tiny crabs hide.
At the west end of the beach, you’ll find beautiful rock formations that you can climb for the best seat on the house with uninterrupted views of the shoreline and mountains. There was a young couple enjoying each other’s company, I stopped and ask if I could take a photo, they smiled and said “si”, she got closer to him and they both smiled. I told them “right now, you must be the happiest couple in the world”…
The young couple giggled, they looked at each other and the young lady said, “yo creo que si” (I think so..). This is what happens when you take the time to find the natural treasures that make Puerto Rico so magical. Once you find them, it’s beauty enchants you, you forget about what else is happening in the world, for those moments, it’s only beauty, happiness, love…
The day we visited was a “busy” Sunday afternoon, we found one family taking a walk on the beach and the couple pictured above. The beach is long, our family enjoyed a walk on the beach as if we had it to ourselves. As with most beaches outside of the tourist areas, you may have this gem to yourself on a weekday as well.
For a few moments while on this beach we paused to appreciate one of the reasons why we love this island, we can enjoy all the comforts and amenities of a modern community and in just a short drive, be at a place where it feels like a private island escape.
Things to Know Before Visiting this beach in Maunabo
This beach is not for swimming due to the strong currents, this beach is for long walks on the beach, for nature lovers, for those seeking a feeling of seclusion without actually being too far away from people.
If you have children they will have plenty of sand to run, play and make sandcastles (not during turtle nesting season March – July), and they can play at the edge of the beach, but again no swimming so keep a watchful eye when visiting with kids. Use the beach at your own risk, there are no lifeguards here.
There are no bathroom facilities on the beach, but you can walk up to the little museum at the lighthouse which closes at 4:30 pm.
There’s one covered picnic table shaded by lush trees with a beach view. Bring your picnic basket or bring a blanket for a romantic picnic on the sand cooled by the Caribbean Sea breezes.
This beach is a nesting site for the Leatherback and Hawksbill sea turtles. A group of volunteers from the community help patrol the beaches to protect the nesting sites during the nesting season from March – July. You don’t have to be an official volunteer to help protect these precious creatures. You can do your part by not leaving any type of trash behind when you visit the beach, even a cigarette bud can be harmful. If you happen to visit the beach during nesting season, please walk on the wet sand, be watchful during your walk for baby turtles, do not touch them, they do not need your help to get in the water.
We hope you enjoy your visit to the Punta Tuna Reserve Beach in Maunabo, Puerto Rico.
Be sure to visit the Punta Tuna Lighthouse